Washington Dept of Ecology
Before we start talking about the Washington state Department of Ecology, Pacific Legal Foundation Senior Attorney, Tony Francois as he describes the approach that the EPA takes to many clean water act problems. “They use a hammer.” And that seems to be how Washington state Department of Ecology Director Maia Bellon feels. She submitted formal objections to EPA’s attempts to make illegal changes to Section 401 of the Clean Water Act.
Statement from Director Bellon:
“This reckless EPA proposal aims to strip away state authority and is part of EPA’s relentless assault on clean water. We strongly oppose EPA’s efforts to undo 50 years of law that have maintained states’ authority to protect waters within our borders. We have continually urged EPA to drop this ill-advised proposal.
“This is an overreach and power grab by EPA to diminish state authority so projects can be built at lightning speed regardless of their environmental harms or consequences.
“EPA should abandon this misguided attempt to diminish state authority and instead allow states to continue their long tradition of stewarding Section 401 responsibly, justly, and consistent with the law.
“Washington state has a long and well-documented record of implementing a successful and fair Section 401 program. We are determined to maintain this authority and continue to protect public health and our state’s waters.”
Read Ecology’s formal objections to EPA’s proposal: ecology.wa.gov/oct21letter